Monthly Round-Up: Rose & Thorns – May 2023

May Rose & Thorns – A monthly recap of the highs and lows experienced each month.

Rose: The Institution of YouTube

During most of this month, I spent my time preparing my mother’s new condo for her to move in. We did a lot of work to make her home feel just right, including painting all the walls, fixing the porch screen, and rearranging furniture until the feng shui was perfect. I enjoy improving the look and feel of a space as if I was a contractor in a past life. Even if my hands’ blister and my back ache from standing, the satisfaction of seeing a clean, white wall makes it all worth it.

Through this experience, I learned a new skill. During one of our countless trips to the hardware store, I suggested we change the beige outlets to white to match the new white outlet covers. My mom envisioned a clean floor to ceiling white condo. I could foresee myself replacing the outlet covers with crisp white covers only to be taunted by the grimy round beige outlets and light switches sticking out of the walls from every room. I knew this would bother my mother in the same way (we have the same Type-A personally when it comes to design). I couldn’t sign my name to this project and let those beige outlets remain intact.

I had limited knowledge of changing an outlet, with only a vague memory of watching someone do it years ago. Therefore, I turned to the college of YouTube to learn how to accomplish this task. With a quick search and a few videos of people explaining the process, I felt confident I could summon my past contractor life to change these outlets without setting the place on fire. 

I not only acquired a new skill, but I also got my sister’s assistance in replacing the outlets while I was changing the light switches. I’m happy to report everything was replaced, and the condo hasn’t burned down (yet). 


Thorn: Hacking the System

This month, I’m striving to be financially responsible. I got a promotion and want to invest the extra income into an IRA with my employer. They offer a matching program where they will match 3% of what I contribute, making it an excellent opportunity.

What was supposed to be an easy 30-minute meeting with the financial advisor turned into a three-hour fiasco. Without giving away too much detail (and potentially sending the global financial system into a spiral), my account was not logging into the correct account when I used my username and password. Every I.T. person working for this investment firm was contacted; we had three phones calling three different people trying to resolve the problem. The tone of panic echoed from person to person once they realized the magnitude of this glitch. 

I went home with no resolve that day. We scheduled an early morning phone call to pick up where we left off the next day. Thankfully, the I.T. wizards fixed the issue overnight, and I was able to gain access to my account when I logged in. Had this company not been tied to my employer, I would have canceled my investment account and run out of there immediately. However, I will remain positive, and keep a close eye on, my financial future. 


May Favorites

Camera Tripod – In the past month, I have been attempting to gain skills in photography using my Nikon 5600 instead of relying on my smartphone. This has led me to add new items to my camera bag to make my life easier as I attempt to take different styles of photos. The first of which was a new Camera Tripod. This tripod is less compact than I had hoped, but it is twice as sturdy as I thought it would be. I’m confident my camera is secure in any configuration when mounted on top of this tripod. 

Sunglasses – A few months ago, I unfortunately lost my favorite pair of sunglasses while on a trip with my sisters. I’m notorious for being hard on sunglasses and can’t be outside without them. For this reason, I gravitate toward not spending a lot on sunglasses. I was unhappy with the selection of trendy sunglasses at my local Target, leading me to turn to Amazon for replacement tortoiseshell sunglasses. I lucked out and found two pair I have been using on a steady rotation this month (find them HERE and HERE). Both of these sunglasses are under $15 and are polarized. The best part is if anything happens to these sunglasses, I can have a replacement pair in as little as two days.


May Blog Post Recap

I’m pleased to share that I published three blog posts this month, which is more than my usual two. In case you missed them, you can click on the pictures below to read them.

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